Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Choosing Joy- Gitzen Girl

This will be short.

Saw a post in my twitter feed about this- the funeral is currently happening. I was curious. Who was
Gitzen Girl?
Why were so many people sharing information about this woman from Cedar Falls, IA?
The fact that she had just died was news- how? What caused her to die?

I followed the link in that tweet. I found this page and from that page I clicked on another link that lead me to this page and by now I was hooked.

So I pulled up her blog and started back in May 2008 where she began to tell her story. To be honest I've only read the first 5 posts or so, but they've brought tears to my eyes- to read about someone who is no longer here...but was only days, even hours ago! It is interesting to me to read about a person's life- especially from their own viewpoint. She has a strong testimony.

Sara chose joy even though she lived in constant pain!
Choose joy as Sara did! (I say this to myself, as well.)

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Shopping...with Men

I have no brothers and growing up, my dad usually had uniforms to wear so shopping for men's clothing is something I just really haven't done. Once I drove a friend to the mall to find a shirt and tie for a special program he was in, but I wasn't really any help and left him to his own devices while I looked at leather luggage across the way.

This weekend I had a fun experience and while I will not share names (to protect the innocent) I can't NOT share...

There were 7 of us: 2 couples, 2 men and me. We had just finished a light dinner and some great discussion at Panara's and headed next door into the mall. One of the couples had mentioned wanting to ice skate and the rest of us agreed to come watch and continue the conversation. However, I quickly realized that I was designated bag holder because the girls left me with their bags and both couples headed to the rink.

Oh well, I thought, I've got a comfy place to sit and two friends to talk with...

"Yes," one of the guys said. "Now I can go shopping and get some pants for work!"
"All right." the other guy said.
"Oh, sorry, Hannah..."

That did it. I was not going to stay alone with the bags and if the guy wanted to shop for pants, well then ok! I had an idea...I later learned from my sisters that they would NEVER have asked any guy to do this...I won't either after Friday night...

"If y'all help carry these bags we can go." I said.
*Short awkward moment of silence.*

"Oh come on, it'll be fine! Most of the stores are closed anyway." I said- truly I assumed they'd say no. (It was 9pm and most of the stores were closed.)

We'll call these guys: Tim and Bob just to make this story telling easier...those are NOT their real names though...

Tim inched toward the large bag...probably because it looked more like a bag than a purse- despite it's hot pink color.
Bob shrugged the denim purse onto his shoulder, and I grabbed my own leather bag. (Probably should've traded with one of them...)

We began walking the length of the mall looking at all the closing or closed stores and swapping "mall" stories.

At last we reached a large department store. Upon discovering they were open until 10pm the guys headed straight towards the back of the store with all the man stuff. Realizing that this was not my favorite situation I loitered in the main aisle and watched them discuss pants.

Bob spotted a 70% off display and began sorting through the hangers looking for something worthy.
Tim instructed Bob in the "no white pants after Labor Day" rule and I realized that even though I know that rule, I'd almost worn white jeans that night anyway...good thing I didn't.

Still sporting the denim purse on his shoulder, Bob caught a passing saleswomen: "Excuse me, where are the men's dressing rooms?" Eyeing the purse on his shoulder she pointed around the corner: "They're painted blue." she said and walked away with a funny expression.

It was all I could do to keep a straight face. I was standing off to the side a bit and managed to hide my smirk. Bob was very excited about two pairs of pants he'd found- one a blue pair of pajama pants that he repeatedly remarked: "are really soft! This is great!"
"And they're only $10" Tim piped in, "that's a good deal!"
"Great" I said.

Bob disappeared to go try them on, Tim continued browsing pants, and I moved into the tie section- I really like the colors and patterns they put into ties. Poor men. They make ties look so attractive to women, yet men hate wearing them...

Bob reappeared with Tim and seemed to be a tiny bit upset about something. Tim was obviously torn between cracking up and soothing ruffled man-feathers. My obvious look of curiousity somehow broke their reserve and Bob admitted that the pajama pants had been women's. I confess: I laughed. Hard.

"Aw man." Bob said "I've never worn women's clothing before!"

We returned from our shopping excursion to the ice skating rink and were shortly greeted by the couples. "Did y'all take the bags with you?!" they asked.

Instantly the two guys from the couples (we'll call them Mark and Dave) wanted to know: "How did you carry them?"
"Um, like this" Tim said and held the pink bag in his hand so that it was hanging over his shoulder and down his back."
"Tsk, tsk, tsk" remarked Dave. "Here," he reached for the pink bag, "this is how you should carry a purse," and he held the bag straight out from his side as if it were contaminated.
Mark felt obligated to pipe in: "OR, you should just not carry it at all. You know, carrying the bags is probably what made y'all want to go shopping in the first place."

Dave picked the purse back up and illustrated the "worst" way a guy could carry a purse: on the shoulder, like women do...just like Bob had.

Tim and I looked at each other and then at Bob who said, "Aw man!" and blushed a bit. The couples didn't notice- we three weren't going to say anything- why embarrass Bob more?

"If you start carrying bags like that," Mark said "you might even end up wearing women's clothes!"

This time it was much harder not to crack up. I looked at Bob who said, "Aw man!" smirked at Tim, and kept my mouth shut. Poor Bob.

I waited until I got home and then laughed with my sisters as I shared the story. :) It was an interesting experience...and I don't think I'll suggest any more of my men friends go shopping while carrying a purse- unless they have a lady with them and are obviously holding it for her.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Lessons from Lucy

I love "I Love Lucy." She's just such a clown- an elegant clown.

The first time I remember seeing the show (re-runs, obviously...) I was seven. The tirading Cuban husband and her hilarious faces coupled with the outrageous situations she found herself in kept me entertained. Even now, I love to just sit and watch her sneak into Ricky's show, hide a new outfit, or gape at the movie stars in Hollywood (as if she wasn't one of them!)

However, watching Lucy can mess with the mind. Suddenly things seem possible that probably aren't.
My biggest memory of Lucy and how she got me into trouble goes something like this:

It was "move-in" week at A&M and I was a senior. I had gone "potluck" and met my new freshman roommate, Kristin, that afternoon. I was invited to a movie night in the next dorm and took her with me. Several people were new to me, but I knew a couple of the guys from Bible study. We watched an awful "classic": Robinhood, Men in Tights...waste of your life...

Anyway, we had just left the movie night and returned to our dorm room. As we were getting ready for bed I had a mini-project that I wanted to get done: fixing my purse.
I had bought this purse in Branson, MO at a dollar store and was quite fond of it. One of the metal chain links kept coming undone so I had purchased some super-glue that promised to hold metal together. Having to cheat and use scissors to get the little bottle open I managed to get the glue onto the chain. After applying some pressure I let go with a satisfied smile. Only it was hard to let go. I managed. Quickly running to the sink I began to rub my fingers under the running water...only all of a sudden they wouldn't rub...they were stuck!!

What did I think of in that moment? Lucy with Fred's fake beard stuck to her face. They had to go to Conneticut to get the glue remover! ACK! I was suddenly in a panic.

Trying to be brave in front of my freshman roommate I searched for my phone. My thumb and first two fingers were firmly glued together. Pinning the phone to the bed with one knee, I used my good hand to search through my contacts. It was nearing midnight...

Thankfully I knew that one of the guys from my Bible study might still be at the other dorm and he had a car! Also, he was studying chemical engineering and glue is a chemical, right??
Dialing his number I held the phone to my ear, silently mouthing: "pick up, pick up, please!"

"Hey Hannah," he said. Relief!
"Um, Serge," I didn't know how to sugarcoat it, "I glued my fingers together and they won't come apart!"
"I can't get my fingers unstuck! They're glued together!" Here the panic was escalating and I happened to turn and see Kristin sitting on her bed staring at me with HUGE blue eyes. Her face would've cracked me up if I hadn't been so close to crying!
"Um, Hannah I can't hear you, can you say that again?" His voice was a bit muffled (laughter...sigh*)
By this point I was almost hysterical: "I glued my fingers together with super-glue! They won't come apart! Help! What do I do?!"
It was then I heard peals of laughter. Serge had put me on speaker phone... I was too panicked at the moment to care.
He told me I needed 100% acetone (that's REALLY strong nail polish remover,'ll take the varnish off of linoleom...*ahem* yes I have accidentally done that...)

I suppose my panic finally triggered the "hero" in Serge because he came to give me a ride to Walmart for the acetone. I asked Kristin to come along and, her blue eyes still the size of saucers, she curiously followed along. Half an hour later I was getting settled with burning fingers...but they were fingers again and not a blob of glued flesh!

The purse? The stupid super glue didn't even last a week!